South Haven, Michigan
It is a phenomenal thing to be paid to write books, and I am thankful every day for this. The business of book commissions and editing takes every ounce of my braingoo so I almost never have time to write in my own voice for my own reasons. But right in the midst of GTS’ing something for a project, this popped up… was 2016 really the the last time I even tried?
Thank you, #AutumnSkyPoetryDaily, for reminding me of the sound of my own voice.
PROUD BUT NEVER SATISFIED began its pre-launch today by our publisher, Huron/The Studer Group.
Alas, I’ve typed the surface off some of the keys while writing this book… apparently, writing about healthcare puts a lot of pressure on “H” and “M” and “N.”
#seavercreative #deliverables #transformativehealthcare #leadership #needanewkeyboardnow
the story Lydia used to tell, that one
about sobbing out behind the barn
so she missed the phone call with the
good news she’d waited so long for…
when I got your phone call last October
–His voice telling you CALL HER—
you didn’t even know where to find me
I had this disembodied thought:
bad news has planted a homing device
in me…has me on speed-dial
A few months before Jon died, I asked
him to tell me one true thing and he said
he couldn’t say…that he wasn’t sure
he’d ever told the truth about anything
…which was a lie
There we all were…our poetic fury
our tenderness to each other, our love,
our pathos… and our need to go on living,
to bear the brilliant madness of him…Jenny said
“I want to kick his motherfucking ass”
but I never felt angry…I knew his list
whittled down to scant few real things in
the end…and death was the last thing on it
I still wake up in mourning…
the geese pull the gray sheet of
November up over the face of the
cold world…there are so few real things,
really alive things in it, but I know
they are worth living for… at least
I hope I know that
Spell 161 in The Book of the Dead tells how
to reanimate a soul…by releasing the four
winds…breathing life with written words,
through vigils, chants…by bringing back the light
…surely we have done that, just look
at the life of him we’ve made…just
look at the life he’s made of us
in loving memory of the poet Jon Berkley Wallace who died on this day ten years ago… and we couldn’t stop him
© Liana 10/11 (original post)
According to her tattoo, the waitress is sinful. The eggs . . she asked me How do I want them?
Actually, the order was put in a long time ago. Life brings what it will, and on that day, it was serving me breakfast with Walter Gabriel Trachsler XIII in a small diner near the Missouri River bottoms of downtown Kansas City. The band he was traveling with played nearby last night, so “he’s with the band” sortuv; more accurately, he’s with the bus.
In fact, the first time I saw him, he was squatting beside an idling band bus drying his long wet black hair in the warm air flowing from as its AC-vents. This will forever remain on my top three “Most Memorable Meetings” list . . . and I’m still waiting for the other two entries.
We hadn’t finished the first cup of coffee before I switched from calling him “Walter” to the far-more appropriate “Gabriel” after hearing the story of his remarkable name. His chronicles from what he’s doing now (spending months on the road driving some band on its tour) to what he did back when he was the rock star cover lot of crucial, incredulous insider-randomania. Since forming his own metal hair band, The Rotting Corpse, in 1985 (with John Perez) he’s performed as musician and mechanic all over the world.
Stories abound . . . Gabriel is the repository of an entire epoch of cultural history with an “I alone survived to tell the tale” sense of duty to the genre.
There are lots of character sketches and sidebars along the way—especially from his childhood. It is understood that he was a challenging kid to a single mom, but the story of how she sent him on a one-way trip in the cargo-hold of a military plane to his even more rascally father (who lived somewhere on a boat near Puerto Rico) deserves to be a movie. I’d never heard “motherfucker” as a term of endearment before, but most of Gabriel’s stories sound like that and are full of lots of things a small-town midwestern girl wouldn’t have heard before.
I was rapt.
Oh yeah, I got stories, he says.
He’s laughing nowadays, possibly with relief. Everything that can go wrong is something he’s seen before . . . been there, fixed that. Mostly.
There’s nothing he can’t fix if it’s not human, and there have been police-radioed, breaking-news notable exceptions in the latter category.
For those, he’s put pen to paper and written his heart out. Over the years, I’ve saved his missives for the day he’s ready to serious about the great book of his own life. That’s how we’re connected and I don’t let him forget it, because the Muse won’t let me forget it.
There are a lot of people from the past fully present in Gabriel, grateful for his friendship and loyalty and integrity. They’re all crowded around the breakfast table of his birthday today in person or in legend cuz “it’s another fuckin party!” . . . (dis)ORDERS-UP!
Yes, it’s just eggs, but so were we all once . . . then broken, and made a certain way. Gabriel holds this all inside with a raucous reverence and a powerful, gentle motherfukin love.
Happy Birthday, Walter Gabriel, from Leeanne/Liana.
The leeks I planted have gone to seed.
This pleases me to no end because that’s when they’re most photogenic.
That’s how my garden grows, and that’s also how writing goes. A thing gets planted . . . but it often produces a different yet related outcome . . . like somewhere along the way, the question I was asking changed because of the answer that appeared.
When I was about 19, I had this remarkable dream that I would have a son one day who would be a seer. I wouldn’t know what that meant until almost ten years later when an audiologist confirmed our baby boy was deaf.For the most part, I put off the grief about that news for almost 25 years. Instead, I thought of that dream and dove into its goodness . . . this was going to be about seeing, not about not hearing.
How that boy could see . . . always different than everyone else . . . inside the soul and outside the lines. One morning when he was maybe four or five, he woke up earlier and happier than usual. I came into the kitchen to find him already at the table with crayons and paper drawing something with the kind of intensity that pushes tongue out over lip. He beamed up at me . . . held up his drawing of this scene:
“Last night I dreamt you a raccoon.”The years have been full of such gifts . . . deafness has given me much more than it ever cost me. But it cost a lot–frustration, raging at the world that wasn’t kind, patient or just; my guilt and vulnerability and trust and doubt and confusion and exasperation.
But not with my son, at least no more than usual when your kid sasses back, whacks his brother, launders his hearing aids, skips school, keeps dating a bad girlfriend, and trades his sensible car in for a super-jacked ATV.Now we are writing a book together, and more gifts come at me a myriad of ways. Things I wondered about in the days before he had enough language to tell me what he felt have come pouring forth. We are waking and dreaming together.We laugh, we cry, we find each other in new ways and discover we were never lost, not even once. Even now when he lives a thousand miles away and days pass without a word, I can feel him in the darkness of every kind of distance. For me, this hasn’t been about seeing or hearing, but about feeling.